PETALING JAYA: PPBM deputy president Mukhriz Mahathir has been accused of lying over Cambridge Analytica’s (CA) role in helping him in the last general election.
The accusation came from Mukhriz’s former media officer Azrin Zizal, who is now head of SCL Group’s Southeast Asia division. SCL is the parent group of CA.
“Mukhriz said CA worked for Barisan Nasional (BN). This again is not true. The 2013 election advice for Kedah was provided to Mukhriz personally.
“At no time has CA or its parent, SCL Group, ever worked for or been paid by BN or any part of the government of Malaysia,” Azrin said in a statement today.
Azrin had worked for Mukhriz when the latter was deputy international trade and industry minister, between 2008 and 2013.
However, the two differ as to when Azrin finally ceased work for the former Kedah menteri besar.
According to a report by Malaysiakini, Mukhriz said Azrin stopped working for him when he became Kedah MB in 2013, while Azrin says he continued to serve Mukhriz until 2015.
“I worked for Mukhriz personally and provided communications and strategy advice for him until 2015, including during the 2013 general election, and afterwards when he became menteri besar.
“I will provide proof if he continues to falsify the truth,” Azrin was quoted as saying by the news portal.
Meanwhile, Mukhriz said it would not be possible for Azrin to tender any proof as such.
“I would be interested to see how he is going to prove that he was my employee when I was the Kedah MB, when every media representative in Kedah knows that my media officer, while I was MB, was and still is Mohd Fisol Jaafar.
“His claims that BN’s win in Kedah and my subsequent appointment as MB was all his doing is absolutely delusional,” Mukhriz said in a statement.
“Azrin should also be reminded that it was his employer, CA, themselves who claimed in their website that they helped Kedah BN.”
CA has made global headlines over the past week after it was accused of extracting the personal data of up to 50 million Facebook users without consent for use in the US presidential campaign to help Donald Trump.
CA had also admitted to conducting operations in Malaysia, claiming on its website that it had helped Prime Minister Najib Razak win the last general election.
According to CA Political, it helped BN win in Kedah in the last polls with a “targeted messaging campaign highlighting their school improvements since 2008″.
In 2013, Mukhriz was made Kedah menteri besar after helping BN wrest the state from the now defunct Pakatan Rakyat, which had governed the state since 2008.